The Ibadan High Chiefs who were elevated to status of Obas in Ibadanland on Thursday said that contrary to media reports, they have not agreed to surrender their crowns in order to be readmitted as members of the Olubadan-in-Council.
Recall that earlier in the week, two of them, High Chief Lekan Balogun and visited the Olubadan’s palace without their crowns, saying they were working towards reconciliation. The Olubadan, Oba Saliu Adetunji, had aevised the High Chiefs to drop their controversial crowns and return to the palace.
But speaking at a press conference in Alalubosa GRA area of Ibadan, the High Chiefs said that for them to attend any other reconciliation meetings with the Olubadan, the Obas said the Olubadan must agree with them to wear their beaded crown and ensure that his wife, is not allowed to be present, in line with the tradition of the Olubadan-in-Council meetings.
The controversial Obas in attendance at the conference include, Owolabi Olakeleyin (the Balogun of Ibadanland), Oba Tajudeen Ajibola (Osi Balogun), Oba Lateef Adebimpe (Ashipa Balogun), Oba Eddy Oyewole (Ashipa Olubadan), Oba Abiodun Kola-Daisi, (Ekerin Olubadan), Oba Amidu Ajibade (Ekarun Olubadan) and Oba Kola Adegbola (Ekarun Balogun Olubadan).
Speaking on behalf of the others, Oba Olakuleyin said: “The reason we called this press conference is simply to tell you the fact of the case. On Monday, one Oba and one High Chief went to misrepresent us before Kabiyesi Olubadan of Ibadan, as we read in the media. All that were published were false. Our beaded crowns remain with us. It remains with us.
“If Olubadan want us to drop our beaded crown, he himself should drop the title of His Imperial Majesty conferred on him by the same governor that made us obas. That they called us to come is simply a gimmick. Our beaded crowns remain with us.
“It is not only the question of beaded crown that caused our disagreement with Olubadan. As far as we are concerned, we the Obas-in-Council, Olubadan is not ruling. His wife is the one and that one we have pointed out to him from time to time.
“If you were there on Monday at the supposed meeting, you will see the woman that she was even with them at the meeting and it shouldn’t be so. It shouldn’t be so.
“The question of where we collectively agree on an issue and before we come back on the adjourned day, all that we have agreed on would have been altered and we know that Kabiyesi’s wife had been the one behind such situation. She is the one who decided and we have been saying that her involvement is against the tradition of Council.
“As at Sunday, our Otun Olubadan was still trying to persuade us to attend the Monday meeting but I told him that it was a gimmick and that the press will be there and they will use us. He has now seen that what I told him was correct.
“Our decision is still the same. We don’t drop our beaded crowns, it is conferred on us legally and it has come to stay. Our point is that we don’t drop our beaded crown and when we are with the Olubadan, we are not fighting him in any way, he is the one fighting us because from day one, the Olubadan was there when Governor Ajimobi called us. The Olubadan was there and he was happy and his response when he was asked if he supports it, he said ‘yes’. Only for him to go back and deny that he didn’t say ‘yes’.
“We shouldn’t say our Oba is lieing, it is too mean to say our Oba is telling lies. When we have decided, we have decided. If Ladoja said he doesn’t agree with the Olubadan, the Olubadan had looked into the relevant sections of the law and had perfected the law conferring Obaship on us. So, we are legally appointed as obas. Nobody can remove it. Nobody can remove the beaded crown from us.”